Wednesday, 22 January 2014

History 12-2/12-3: USA Civil Rights

Today we started by working on Falk's Ex #3 (p. 215-18 in the workbook).  Then I showed some segments from the JFK documentary (specifically outlining the discrimination/segregation that existed in 1960, the 1962 controversy over James Meredith at "Ole Miss" University, and the 1963 March on Washington).  The suggestion was that JFK's record on change was not as remarkable as is often reported.  We discussed the political reality in a democracy whereby leaders sometimes must balance their desire to create change and their need to be reelected.  I also issued a study guide/cheat sheet to outline the "must-know" events connected to this topic.  Everyone should listen to Martin Luther King Jr.s' "I Have a Dream" (short version).

It is important to remember that while the course content ends with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, many of the topics we study could/should go beyond that.  In the case of civil rights, we would be well-served to examine events like the Rodney King assault by LAPD officers in 1984 and more recently the topic of gay marriage (Defense of Marriage Act) as well as a host of others.  Occasionally there are high profile examples of lynchings to this day: Byrd Murder, 1998

Here is a PPT that introduces today's lesson that I choose not to use today: Intro to Civil Rights

We ended by debriefing the DeMarco reading.  Tomorrow is the last day to hand in any outstanding work.  It is also when we will begin out two-day course review.  It would be best for everyone to be there.  

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